SEDRO WOOLLEY, Wash. -- Students boxed up groceries for the annual holiday food drive at Cascade Middle School on Wednesday - or at least what there was of them.
"I just felt terrible because we've been working hard to get food for the people in our community," said 8th grader Lafe Martinson.
A pipe burst at the Sedro-Woolley school over the weekend, water logging 200 pounds of food that had been gathered over the past three weeks. All of it was deemed unfit to be handed out.
While work was being done to repair their school, the kids tried to figure out a way to fix their food shortage. They had hoped to collect 500 pounds of food for their hungry neighbors. Now they have to start all over.
"I'm worried that we might not be able to get enough food because we have a week and a half until the food drive is over," said Martinson.
All that food was supposed to be given to 15 families at the school who bravely admitted they don't have enough food to eat. Half of the students at Cascade Middle are considered low-income, making the need to replace it that much more urgent for students.
"We see them daily," said 8th grader Demetria Haigh. "We know everyone has needs, but these people are especially needy."
The kids put the word out that this city, where unemployment still hovers near 8% and the average person makes less than $25,000 a year, has to dig a little deeper. And little by little people are. One woman, who doesn't even have a child at the school, anonymously delivered three big boxes Wednesday.
The school says CPI Pumbing, which is working to fix the broken pipes, has pledged 200 pounds of food. The kids are confident their community will deliver.
"We have 15 families in need," said Demetria Haigh. "We will provide for them this holiday season."